Hollywood continues to look to the world of children's books for upcoming movie projects. Two more popular children's book characters have just joined the roster of soon-to-be movie stars!
Fans of Captain Underpants will be happy to know that the pudgy underwear-clad superhero will soon be flying across the big screen. Dreamworks Animation has acquired the rights to turn the popular book series into an animated feature. They've been pursuing the author Dav Pilkey for the movie rights since 1997, and he finally decided the time was right.
Fans of Hank the Cowdog are also in for a treat. Hank, who has been the star of 58 books by John R. Erickson, will soon be making his big screen debut as well. Odyssey Pictures has acquired the rights to produce an animated movie of the much loved canine Head of Ranch Security. It is sure to be a hit with the whole family.
Both of these projects are in the early stages of development, so you have plenty of time to read the books before the movies hit the theaters. We can only hope that the movies will be as good as the books!
The newest series of American Girl books features not one girl but two! Meet Marie-Grace and Cécile. The setting of the books is New Orleans in 1853. Marie-Grace is the daughter of a doctor who recently moved to New Orleans. Cécile comes from a prosperous family of free people of color. The two girls form an unlkely friendship as a yellow fever epidemic sweeps through the city. This new American Girl series is filled with inspiring lessons of compassion, courage, and friendship.
Meet Marie-Grace by Sarah Masters Buckey
Meet Cécile by Denise Lewis Patrick
Marie-Grace and the Orphans by Sarah Masters Buckey
Troubles for Cécile by Denise Lewis Patrick
Marie-Grace Makes a Difference by Sarah Masters Buckey
Cécile's Gift by Denise Lewis Patrick
Each year during the last week of September libraries across the country celebrate Banned Books Week, an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. This year Banned Books Week runs from September 24 - October 1.
The American Library Association compiles a list of the top ten most challeneged or banned books each year. Over the past ten years here are some of the children's books that have made that notorious list.
- Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
- Scary Stories series by Alvin Schwartz
- Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey
- And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
- Olive's Ocean by Kevin Henkes
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
- It's Perfectly Normal by Robie H. Harris
- In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak
- Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
- Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
- Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
Did any of your favorite books make the list? Aren't you glad we have the freedom to read what we want? Here at the library we think it is worth celebrating. Celebrate Banned Books Week!
If you are a fan of the "Wimpy Kid" books and have been anxiously anticipating the next title in this series, your wait is almost over. The fifth book entitled The Ugly Truth will be released next week. (It's purple!) In this new book the hilarious pressures of life inÂ middle school test Greg Hefflly's friendship with his best pal Rowley. There is already a waiting list for this book, but you can get your name on the list by placing a hold in our web catalog or by calling the library.
If you love dogs and you love books, then you're in luck! Children's books are full of dogs. There's Kipper and Spot and Angus and Carl. There's Clifford the Big Red Dog and Harry the Dirty Dog. There's Biscuit and Mudge. There's Skippyjon Jones (oh wait, that's a cat who thinks he's a dog). There's Ribsy and Old Yeller. There's even Walter the Farting Dog. The list goes on and on. Two of my favorites are Martha the talking dog from the picture books by Susan Meddaugh and Winn-Dixie from Because of Winn-Dixie. Do you have a favorite literary canine? Leave us a comment and tell us who your favorite "book dog" is.
Anyone who has ever read Charlotte's Web will be very familiar with Garth Williams's wonderful illustrations in that book. Who can think of Wilbur or Charlotte or Fern without picturing the artist's pen and ink drawings? The late Mr. Williams also illustrated such children's classics as Stuart Little, The Cricket in Times Square, and all of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House books. This month the family of Mr. Williams put 42 of his original drawings up for sale at an art auction. The original illustration for the cover of Charlotte's Web sold for $155,530! That's sure a lot of money, but for fans of E.B. White's classic story, the illustrations will always be priceless.
The votes have been counted and the winners have been announced!Â
The winning title for 3rd - 5th graders is How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O'Connor.Â Living in the family car in their small North Carolina town after their father leaves them virtually penniless, GeorginaÂ feelsÂ desperate to improve their situation.Â Unwilling to accept her overworked mother's calls for patience, Georgina persuades her younger brother to help her in an elaborate scheme to get money by stealing a dog and then claiming the reward that the owners are bound to offer.
Â The winning title for 6th - 8th graders is Cracker!: The Best Dog in Vietnam by Cynthia Kadohata.Â This is a stirring, realistic story of America's war in Vietnam, using the alternating viewpoints of an army "bomb sniffing"Â dog named CrackerÂ and her 17-year-old handler, Rick.
I recently ran across a list of "Top 100 Children's Novels" on a blog on the School Library Journal website.Â The blogger invited readers to submit their ten favorite chapter books in order.Â She received 366 lists from teachers, students, and librarians and then compiled the Top 100 list based upon these responses.Â The results are listed below.Â
#1Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
#2Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
#3Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
#4Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
#5Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L.
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Konigsburg
#6Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Holes by Louis Sachar
#7Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â The Giver by Lois Lowry
#8Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
#9Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
#10Â Â Â Â Â Â The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
#11Â Â Â Â Â Â The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
#12Â Â Â Â Â Â The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
#13Â Â Â Â Â Â Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
#14Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
#15Â Â Â Â Â Â Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
#16Â Â Â Â Â Â Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
#17Â Â Â Â Â Â Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli
#18Â Â Â Â Â Â Matilda by Roald Dahl
#19Â Â Â Â Â Â Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
#20Â Â Â Â Â Â Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
#21Â Â Â Â Â Â Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riodan
#22Â Â Â Â Â Â The Tale of DespereauxÂ by Kate DiCamillo
#23Â Â Â Â Â Â Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
#24Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
#25Â Â Â Â Â Â Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
#26Â Â Â Â Â Â Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
#27Â Â Â Â Â Â A Little Princess by Francis Hodgson Burnett
#28Â Â Â Â Â Â Winnie-the Pooh by A.A. Milne
#29Â Â Â Â Â Â Alice's Adventures in Wonderland /Alice Through the Looking GlassÂ
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â by Lewis Carroll
#30Â Â Â Â Â Â The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
#31Â Â Â Â Â Â Half Magic by Edward Eager
#32Â Â Â Â Â Â Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien
#33Â Â Â Â Â Â James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
#34Â Â Â Â Â Â Watsons Go to Birmingham, 1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis
#35Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
#36Â Â Â Â Â Â Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
#37Â Â Â Â Â Â Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor
#38Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
#39Â Â Â Â Â Â When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
#40Â Â Â Â Â Â The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
#41Â Â Â Â Â Â The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare
#42Â Â Â Â Â Â Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder
#43Â Â Â Â Â Â Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary
#44Â Â Â Â Â Â Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
#45Â Â Â Â Â Â The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
#46Â Â Â Â Â Â Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls
#47Â Â Â Â Â Â Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
#48Â Â Â Â Â Â The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits and aÂ
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Very Interesting Boy by Jeanne Birdsall
#49Â Â Â Â Â Â Frindle by Andrew Clements
#50Â Â Â Â Â Â Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell
#51Â Â Â Â Â Â The Saturdays by Elizabeth Enright
#52Â Â Â Â Â Â The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
#53Â Â Â Â Â Â Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
#54Â Â Â Â Â Â The BFG by Roald Dahl
#55Â Â Â Â Â Â The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson
#56Â Â Â Â Â Â Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
#57Â Â Â Â Â Â Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary
#58Â Â Â Â Â Â The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken
#59Â Â Â Â Â Â Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
#60Â Â Â Â Â Â The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi
#61Â Â Â Â Â Â Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
#62Â Â Â Â Â Â The Secret of the Old Clock by Caroline Keene
#63Â Â Â Â Â Â Gone-Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright
#64Â Â Â Â Â Â A Long Way from Chicago by Richard Peck
#65Â Â Â Â Â Â Ballet Shoes by Noah Streatfeild
#66Â Â Â Â Â Â Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary
#67Â Â Â Â Â Â Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher by Bruce Coville
#68Â Â Â Â Â Â Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech
#69Â Â Â Â Â Â The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
#70Â Â Â Â Â Â Betsy Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace
#71Â Â Â Â Â Â A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket
#72Â Â Â Â Â Â My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett
#73Â Â Â Â Â Â My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
#74Â Â Â Â Â Â The Borrowers by Mary Norton
#75Â Â Â Â Â Â Love That Dog by Sharon Creech
#76Â Â Â Â Â Â Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse
#77Â Â Â Â Â Â City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau
#78Â Â Â Â Â Â Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes
#79Â Â Â Â Â Â All-of-a-Kind Family by Sydney Taylor
#80Â Â Â Â Â Â The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
#81Â Â Â Â Â Â Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
#82Â Â Â Â Â Â The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander
#83Â Â Â Â Â Â The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
#84Â Â Â Â Â Â Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge
#85Â Â Â Â Â Â On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder
#86Â Â Â Â Â Â Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
#87Â Â Â Â Â Â The View from Saturday by E. L. Konigsburg
#88Â Â Â Â Â Â The High King by Lloyd Alexander
#89Â Â Â Â Â Â Ramona and her Father by Beverly Cleary
#90Â Â Â Â Â Â Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan
#91Â Â Â Â Â Â Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar
#92Â Â Â Â Â Â Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
#93Â Â Â Â Â Â Caddie Woodlawn by C. R. Brink
#94Â Â Â Â Â Â Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome
#95Â Â Â Â Â Â Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
#96Â Â Â Â Â Â The Witches by Roald Dahl
#97Â Â Â Â Â Â The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
#98Â Â Â Â Â Â Children of Green Knowe by L.M. Boston
#99Â Â Â Â Â Â The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
#100Â Â Â Â Â The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
How many of these books have you read?Â Did your favorite chapter book make the list?Â If you're looking for a good book to read, I'm sure you couldn't miss with any of theseÂ notable titles.
Did you know there is a National Ambassador
for Young People's Literature?Â The Library of Congress recently named children's author Katherine Paterson as the new ambassador.
Ms. Paterson is the two-time Newbery award-winning author of such books as Bridge to Terabithia and Jacob Have I Loved.Â She has also won the National Book Award twice.Â Â
Paterson will serve a two year term as ambassador working to raise national awareness of the importance of young people's literature.Â She has chosen "Read for Your Life" as the platform during her ambassadorship.Â She is succeeding the first children's ambassador, Jon Scieszka, author of such classics as The Stinky Cheese Man and The True Story of the Three Little Pigs.Â Congratulations Ambassador Paterson!